Austin City Limits Music Festival

My son, who is normally very afraid of loud noises, has asked if he can go to this year’s Austin City Limits Music Festival, known as ACL. I bought us two tickets. I have earphones. I have toilet paper (porta potties, yuck). What I don’t have is a plan.

I’m not even sure where to start. I’ve tried calling the ACL number listed on their website and it’s a recording for the music promoter that’s handling the ticket sales.

I need to talk to someone at ACL to see if they have some suggestions about how they accommodate people with disabilities at such a loud, crowded event. I’m really most concerned about the food issue, as my son is on a gluten-free and dairy-free diet for his autism. They search backpacks when you enter, so I can’t just waltz in there with his day’s food without talking to someone. Also, it would be ideal if he could hang out somewhere away from the music without having to leave, like a volunteer tent or something like that.

I know, I know, it sounds crazy to even try, but when my son wants to try something, I really go into action mode to make it happen. Perhaps we’ll get close to the gates and he won’t be able to manage the noise and crowds. Well, then, I guess this experiment was $180. I give him a lot of credit for even wanting to try.

My next steps are to call the City of Austin ADA department to see if they have any ideas. Do you have any suggestions, dear reader?

I’ll keep you posted.

1 thought on “Austin City Limits Music Festival

  1. Hi, there!

    I’m writing about an autism art and songwriting contest that I think would be of real interest to your community.

    It’s called “Our Voices, Our Vision,’’ and it offers a chance to highlight the tremendous creativity of the autism community. The judges include Temple Grandin and another notable figures in the art and music world, and finalists will receive cash prizes or memorabilia. In addition, the winning artwork will be displayed in a New York City exhibition next April, and the top songs and artwork will be featured in an autism PSA.

    All people have to do to enter is email a file to by Jan. 31, 2015. More information can be found here.

    The contest is open to everybody, and we hope to get entries from parents, siblings, teachers and friends, although prizes will be reserved for those who self-identify as being on the spectrum. The entries do not have to be specifically about autism, and multiple entries are allowed.

    The contest is being organized by James O’Neil and John O’Neil, a son-father team that previously worked on SingSOS/Songs of the Spectrum, a CD of original songs about autism performed Jackson Browne, Dar Williams and others. A contest to choose the CD cover art brought in a wealth of great entries, and the project’s website has received over 1.5 million pageviews.

    If you have questions, please let me know or contact John or James at


    Glenaan O’Neil

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s